Windows 7 RTM has been officially announced where the RTM build is signed off as build version 6.1.7600.16385.090713-1255 with general availability (GA) set to debut publicly on October 22nd, 2009 for retail purchase on online or neighborhood stores worldwide and preinstalled on new computer. Following is the consolidated information available on Windows 7 RTM in FAQ style.
When can end-user gets Windows 7 (Windows 7 RTM GA Release Schedule)
- October 22, 2009 (Wave 0 Release): Brazilian, Chinese Simplified, Chinese Traditional (Hong Kong), Chinese Traditional (Taiwan), Czech, Dutch, English, French, German, Italian, Japanese, Korean, Polish, Portuguese, Russian, Spanish, Turkish
- October 23, 2009 (Wave 1 Release): Danish, Finnish, Hungarian, Norwegian, Swedish
- October 24, 2009 (Wave 2 Release): Arabic, Bulgarian, Estonian, Greek, Hebrew, Lithuanian, Romanian, Slovak, Slovenian, Thai, Ukrainian
- October 25, 2009 (Wave 3 Release): Croatian, Latvian, Serbian Latin
A less convincing release schedule that previously floated are as follow:
October 22, 2009: 14 languages – English, Spanish, Japanese, German, French, Italian, Dutch, Russian, Polish, Brazilian Portuguese, Korean, Simplified Chinese, Traditional Chinese and Chinese (Hong Kong)
October 31, 2009: Remaining 21 languages – Turkish, Czech, Portuguese, Hungarian, Swedish, Danish, Norwegian, Finnish, Greek, Ukrainian, Romanian, Arabic, Lithuanian, Bulgarian, Estonian, Slovenian, Hebrew, Thai, Croatian, Serbian Latin, and Latvian.
Note: Above only deals with language release waves for Windows 7 General Availablity (GA) on and after October 22nd, 2009, and not to be confused with when Windows 7 is released to Microsoft partners, which details below.
When can privileged MSDN, TechNet, Volume Licensing (VL), Microsoft Action Pack, Connect, OEM or Gold and Certified partners or subscribers get Windows 7 RTM? (Windows 7 Release and Availability Schedule)
- July 24, 2009 (2 days after RTM): Microsoft OEM Online (MOO) Software Order Center (original equipment manufactures and system builders)
- August 6, 2009: [English Only] MSDN and TechNet Subscriber Downloads and Microsoft Connect (Subscribers, ISV (independent software vendor) and IHV (independent hardware vendor))
- August 7, 2009: [English Only] Volume License Service Center (VLSC) (Volume License (VL) customer with an existing Software Assurance (SA) license)
- August 16, 2009: [English Only] Microsoft Partner Network (MPN) Portal (Microsoft Partner Program Gold/Certified Members)
- August 23, 2009: [English Only] Microsoft Action Pack (Subscribers)
- September 1, 2009: Volume License customers without a SA license can purchase Windows 7 through Volume Licensing (VL) channel.
- By October 1, 2009: All remaining language-specific Windows 7 RTM versions will be available through all channels.
- October 22, 2009: General availability of Windows 7
What are the editions (SKU) of Windows 7 available? (Windows 7 Editions and Versions)
Windows 7 Starter
Windows 7 Home Basic
Windows 7 Home Premium
Windows 7 Professional
Windows 7 Enterprise
Windows 7 Ultimate
Most end-users will be selecting between Windows 7 Home Premium, Professional and Ultimate though.
What are the features for each edition of Windows 7? (Windows 7 Features List and Windows 7 Features Comparison Between Editions)
Refer to Windows 7 features comparison between editions chart to know the differences between functions and features available in different editions of Windows 7.
To understand more about Windows 7 features, a feature parade with screenshots and demo videos on Windows 7 features highlight has also been showcased.
There is also complete collection and listing of Windows 7 tips, tricks, usage guides, how-to instructions and hacks.
Windows 7 Starter and Home Basic (China only) which is targeted at netbook and nettop class of machine which does not exceed maximum hardware specs limit for Windows 7 Starter has its own set of features limitations and function restrictions.
Is there any special SKU version of Windows 7 that exists? (Windows 7 N, Windows 7 K, Windows 7 KN, Windows 7 E)
Yes, there is Windows 7 N, Windows 7 K, Windows 7 KN and Windows 7 E, where each editions of Windows 7 will also have in these flavors other than standard version.
Windows 7 N: Windows 7 N is meant for European market, and includes the same functionality as Windows 7, except that it does not include Windows Media Player and related technologies such as Windows Movie Maker.
Windows 7 K: Windows 7 K is meant for Korean market, and includes the same functionality as ordinary Windows 7, except that it includes links to a Media Player Center Web site and a Messenger Center Web site.
Windows 7 KN: Windows 7 KN is meant for Korean market, and includes the same functionality as Windows 7 K, except that it does not include Windows Media Player and related technologies such as Windows Movie Maker, links to download Windows Live Messenger, or links to a Media Player Center Web Site and a Messenger Center Web site.
Windows 7 E: Windows 7 E is meant for European Commission countries, including UK, and includes the same functionality as ordinary standard flavor of Windows 7, except that it does not include Internet Explorer 8 (IE8).
Windows 7 E will be selling at promotional upgrade pricing for full version edition before December 31, 2009, as upgrade SKU is not available yet, although direct upgrade from Windows Vista is not supported. Windows 7 E may be withdraw if European Commission accepts proposal to include web browser Ballot Screen on standard Windows 7.
What’s the selling price for Windows 7? (Windows 7 Upgrade and Full Version Packaged Product Retail Price or Windows 7 OEM License Price)
Windows 7 Full Package Retail Price
- Windows 7 Home Premium (Full): $199.99
- Windows 7 Professional (Full): $299.99
- Windows 7 Ultimate (Full): $319.99
Windows 7 Upgrade Price
- Windows 7 Home Premium (Upgrade): $119.99
- Windows 7 Professional (Upgrade): $199.99
- Windows 7 Ultimate (Upgrade): $219.99
Windows 7 OEM Price
- Windows 7 Home Premium (OEM for System Builder): $109.99
- Windows 7 Professional (OEM for System Builder): $139.99
- Windows 7 Ultimate (OEM for System Builder): $189.99
Is there any discount code or promotional offer for Windows 7? (Windows 7 pre-order discount)
Other than Windows 7 E full version FPP that is selling at Windows 7 E Upgrade license price before December 31, 2009, Microsoft also has time-limited Windows 7 pre-order discount offer that see Windows 7 Upgrade price been reduced and slashed to around 50% of more without the need of coupon code
US: Windows 7 Home Premium ($49.99) and Windows 7 Professional ($99.99)
Canada: Windows 7 Home Premium ($64.99) and Windows 7 Professional ($124.99)
Japan: Windows 7 Home Premium (¥7,407) and Windows 7 Professional (¥14,073)
UK: Windows 7 Home Premium (£49.99) and Windows 7 Professional (£99.99)
France and Germany: Windows 7 Home Premium (€49.99) and Windows 7 Professional (€109.99)
Students can get Windows 7 Home Premium or Professional edition at steal price of $29.99.
I buy a Windows Vista PC now, can I upgrade to Windows 7 when it’s available? (Windows 7 Upgrade Option Program)
Yes, Microsoft and its OEM partners will provide free same-edition and same-architecture (32-bit or 64-bit) upgrade from Windows Vista to Windows 7 when Windows 7 is generally available for desktop, notebook and laptop computer purchased between June 26, 2009 till January 31, 2010. The free Windows Vista to Windows 7 upgrade also applicable to customers who buy Windows Vista retail license with paper-based product key directly. The free upgrade program is called Windows 7 Upgrade Option Program, and delivery fulfillment will start from October 22nd, 2009.
Check with your computer vendor on how to order free Windows 7 upgrade media, while Windows Vista retail license holder should visit http://www.windows7upgradeoption.com/. Shipping and handling charge may applies.
What’s the minimum and recommended system hardware specification requirement to run Windows 7? (Windows 7 System Requirements)
- 1 GHz 32-bit or 64-bit processor
- 1 GB of RAM (32-bit) or 2 GB of system memory (64-bit)
- 16 GB of available disk space (32-bit) or 20 GB of avaiable disk space (64-bit)
- DirectX 9 graphics device with WDDM 1.0 or higher driver.
Some features of Windows 7 such as Windows Virtual PC and Windows XP Mode requires additional hardware capability, such as Intel-VT or AMD-V hardware-assisted virtualization.
I have less premium and cheaper version of Windows 7, can I upgrade to higher edition and more premium edition? (Windows 7 Anytime Upgrade Prices and Details)
Windows 7 users with less-premium edition of Windows 7 (not Windows 7 Ultimate) is also allowed to upgrade to higher edition through Windows Anytime Upgrade (WAU), a quick and easy upgrade process by simply purchasing an upgrade key to unlock additional features. Other than usual Windows Anytime Upgrade link contains in installed Windows 7 operating system, customer can purchase Windows Anytime Upgrade retail box with Media-Less Key (MLK) to perform upgrade anytime. Win 7 WAU is available at the following prices:
- Windows 7 Starter to Windows 7 Home Premium: $79.99
- Windows 7 Starter to Windows 7 Professional: $114.99
- Windows 7 Starter to Windows 7 Ultimate: $164.99
- Windows 7 Home Premium to Windows 7 Professional: $89.99
- Windows 7 Home Premium to Windows 7 Ultimate: $139.99
- Windows 7 Professional to Windows 7 Ultimate: $129.99
Can I directly in-place upgrade from Windows XP, Windows Vista or Windows 7 Beta and RC to Windows 7 RTM? (Windows 7 Supported and Unsupported Upgrade Paths)
Microsoft has published Windows 7 Upgrade Paths document which outlines the upgrade paths that are supported and not supported by Windows 7.
Note that do not confuse “upgrade” as in upgrade paths with “upgrade” as in Windows 7 Upgrade license. Windows 7 Upgrade license is eligible for everyone who owns Windows 2000, Windows XP or Windows Vista operating system to purchase at cheaper price compared with full version license (FPP), even though the upgrade path may not be supported (e.g. Windows XP to Windows 7).
I need to upgrade direct from Windows XP to Windows 7 although it’s unsupported. How to do it?
- User who need to retain application programs, settings, and user data, uses Windows Vista workaround to in-place upgrade XP to Windows 7.
- User who just need to retain user data and settings can use Windows Easy Transfer on to upgrade XP to clean installation of Windows 7.
Do I need an activated Windows XP, Windows Vista or Windows 7 RC to upgrade from Windows 7 Upgrade media disc?
Windows 7 Upgrade versions are selling at cheaper price for end-users with genuine Windows Vista, Windows XP, or Windows 2000 on your PC. Some blogger quoting anonymous source obviously thinks that there will be a new upgrade process for Windows 7 where end-user is required to activate the current version of Windows prior to upgrading to Windows 7, where supported Windows versions are Windows XP, Windows Vista and Windows 7 Release Candidate (RC).
However, according to Microsoft IT Pro Evangelist Harold Wong on his TechNet blog post, only the original media (CD/DVD of Windows 2000, Windows XP and Windows Vista is required for Windows 7 Upgrade. The Upgrade media will ask user to insert the media from Windows 2000, XP or Vista so it can perform a check of the physical media before proceeding. For computer already has Windows Vista installed on the machine, the setup it will just allow user to perform an in-place upgrade. If this is the case, the Windows 7 Upgrade process will be even more easier than Windows Vista, which requires an existing (activated or non-activated) Windows OS to install first.
Is there family pack for Windows 7?
Yes. Family Pack of Windows 7 allows installation of Windows 7 Home Premium on 3 computers.
How much is the Windows 7 Family Pack? (Windows 7 Family Pack Prices and Details)
Can I download Windows 7 RTM now?
Note: Microsoft may release the same ISO for Windows 7 RTM in many different names for different channels, such as MSDN, TechNet, Connect, OEM, Volume Licensing and etc.
How to verify the authenticity of Windows 7 ISO? (Windows 7 ISO SHA1 and MD5 Checksum Values)
All SHA1 and MD5 checksum hash value, which is unique to each and every file, for Windows 7 RTM is listed on MSDN or TechNet Subscriber Downloads section, which is accessible to anyone even without a paid subscription. The checksum can be used to compare and verify the originality of ISO images. Easier, check out the SHA1 and MD5 checksum for popular Windows 7 ISO.
Is there any way to bypass or skip activation in Windows 7? What’s the best activation crack for Windows 7?
The instant offline OEM activation crack with OEM-SLP product key, which the best activation crack for Windows 7 as the method not only can activate Windows 7 properly, but also pass all WGA or WAT validation, is now available for Windows 7 Ultimate. Usual prerequisites are BIOS with SLIC table version 2.1, corresponding OEM cert, and OEM-SLP (System-Lock Preinstallation) product key.
OEM activation can be done in two forms, softmod (such as WoW and Vista Loader) which emulate a BIOS with SLIC, or biosmod (hardmod) which physically modify and flash motherboard BIOS to insert the required Windows marker.
In the meantime, visit Windows 7 forums for more information.
What’s the builds that available on various branches of Windows 7 development tree?
Windows 7 win7_rtm Branch Build List
6.1.7600.16385.win7_rtm.090713-1255 (Final RTM Gold Code)
6.1.7268.0.win7_rtm.090701-1900 (Windows Server 2008 R2 Leaked)
Windows 7 winmain Branch Build List
Windows 7 Service Pack 1 winmain_sp Branch Build List
Windows 7 winmain_win7ids IDX Branch Build List
Windows 7 Service Pack 1 winmain_win7ids_sp IDX Branch Build List
What’s the all SKU that Windows 7 and Windows Server 2008 R2 available for US English?
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